The mysterious bollards
These bollards are as mysterious as they are intricate. They flank the entrance to the Curzon Hotel at the North End of Cavendish Place. Cavendish Place was built in 1829 by CA Busby; the Curzon was two residences known as Cavendish Mansions until about 1900.
Fittings at the top of the bollards indicate that they may have been gateposts, though they are too far apart for entrance gates to a Brighton townhouse. (Their design suggests they are the same era as the Curzon, rather than posts for cast iron railings around Cavendish Mansions). Alternatively the bollards could have been the bases of low-level gas lamps, with the fittings designed to support the posts of the lamps.
Alexis May e-mails (Feb 1, 2001): I moved into Flat 2, 8 Cavendish Place, in December 2000. The Curzon Hotel is now numbers 8 and 9 Cavendish Place, and consists of flats. Mine is at the rear on the left, in the basement, and apparently used to be the bar. The filigree bollards are still here, but not as nice as in your photo! If you have any more info for me about the building or road, please let me know, as my partner and I both hear some very odd noises!